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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
<p>For the past 5 days my 21 month old has only napped if I've worn him on my back while walking...today it is 16 degrees and not an option.  So, he's just not napped 3 out of the past 5 days.  Prior to this he was napping for 2-3 hours every single day (with occasional 4 hour marathon naps).  </p>
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<p>Now, I put him in his crib, like I always do at around 1pm and he sings/babbles to himself for upwards of two hours.  He is clearly exhausted (if I put him on my back and start walking he's out in a matter of minutes) but NOT sleeping.  I tried having him lie down with me to nap today but he just kept knocking on my head (literally, knocking) and crawling all over me.  We are supposed to have an early dinner with friends tonight but there is no way I can take him if he doesn't nap (he'll make us all miserable).</p>
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<p>Any suggestions?  Is this common around this age?  I just don't know what to do to get my formally great napper back.  </p>
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<p>I'm pretty sure it's a "thing," as mine has been doing it, too.  One thing I'm sure of is that she's not actually trying to drop the nap.  She simply cannot function beyond 9-ish hours of awake time, so the no-nap thing really wreaks havoc on her sleep schedule (and our life!).  Shes does exactly what yours does - She sings, plays with her feet, talks and talks and talks.  Seriously, she is NEVER as busy as when she is doing the no-nap nap.  I've found that I can help her to sleep by singing to her, actually kind of loudly.  She needs to focus on something instead of letting her stream-of-consciousness thing happen.  Songs that are MOSTLY repetitious work great for us (like Old MacDonald).  I also ended up moving her naptime earlier because I found I had let it slide later.  It seems to be helping to put her to sleep when she's less tired, but we shall see!  Now if only she'd nap for longer than 40 minutes.....</p>
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<p>(22 months old, BTW)</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
<p>I actually tried putting him down an hour earlier for his nap today and it was a no go.  Then, at 3 I took him for a drive (which didn't work).  He had zero impulse control and kept being really rough with me from around 5:30pm on (kisses kept turning into head butting), I put him down about 40 minutes earlier than usual for bed and he had a rougher time than usual falling asleep (altho' he was CLEARLY exhausted) because of being overtired.  Tomorrow is church and the very soonest I can try to get him to nap is noon because I teach Sunday school...wondering if I should bow out of teaching tomorrow so that I can get him home sooner.  (And, he'll be 22 months at the end of this month :)  </p>
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<p>Anyone else struggling with naps all of a sudden at this age?</p>
 

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<p>Hi! My DS didn't do this until about 34 months, which is a HUGE difference. I know. So, I won't pretend that what worked for us will for you. But first I want to tell you I'M SORRY!! Its such a miserable thing to go through when a child still desperately needs their nap. Truly, I think the several weeks that we went through where he was refusing it, was honestly the lowest I have felt about parenting. I'm sorry you are having to go through it so early.</p>
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<p>Prior to this, DS would go to bed great. I'd put him in bed, he'd go to sleep. At 1. Easy.</p>
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Then, all h*** broke lose and it was misery. Younger DS was 5 months old at the time. Long story short. What eventually worked, is if I just stayed in the room for a few minutes until he was asleep. Now, since he was old enough, I told him "if you sit up, i won't be able to stay in  here because i would like quiet time" and so on for any random behavior he decided to pull out to try and keep himself awake. Anyhow, seems so simple that i don't know why it took so long to figure out. (I think originally I thought he was trying to drop it and I was going to shoot for a quiet time if he was dropping. Turned out he wasn't trying to drop it). Anyways there was a lot of struggle and crying (mainly on MY end!) and frustration through the whole process.</p>
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<p>It sounds like your LO is trying to do anything to stay awake (like my DS was), and that the baby carrier is the ticket to sleep. I wonder if you could rock him and then put him down??? Or maybe just continue to put him in bed for nap at the same time, even he talks the whole time? You could stay and read or something??</p>
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<p>I'm just trying to think of anything...I got "just spank him" advice more than once and was SO stinkin frustrated, hoping that someone would give me a suggestion that i didn't findd cruel.</p>
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<p>I will offer this. In Healthy Sleep Habits, Healthy Child (the crying it out part I don't adhear to)--the author talks about typical sleep patterns and at your DSs age would say bedtime around 7-8ish with nap around 1pm. He also talks a lot about avoiding the overtired state (like you mentioned). Don't  know if that will help, but helped us some.</p>
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<p>Good Luck. Unfortunately its one of those situations without an easy solution. I hope you find something that works for you both!</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
<p>Thanks for the response.  We are big fans of Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child (the science of it) and the 7:15pm bedtime and 1pm nap have been our standard for months...</p>
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<p>So, yesterday, no nap.  I put him down for bed at 6:45pm and he fell asleep with a bit more weeping and gnashing than usual because he was just SO tired.  Then, he woke up at midnight and could not fall asleep again until 4:45am.  </p>
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<p>This SO sucks.  I'm solo this week while DW is at a conference and I just don't know how we are going to get through this.  I'll give sitting in the room with him a try--but he's so social that having me in there may just give him an audience.  In the past when I've tried to stay with him for one reason or another he's screamed because if I'm in the room he wants to be in my arms.  </p>
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<p>ETA, he's still asleep (7:34am our time when he's usually up around 6am) I am worried that sleeping in will kill the nap again, but I'm also concerned b/c he was up for almost 5 hours last night...and so I want him to sleep a bit more.  What to do?</p>
 

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<p>Both of my kids always napped better when worn.  And it has been my go-to in winter and summer.  It is quite possible to take an outdoor nap walk at temps at least down to zero degrees (as cold as it gets here) if you and the kid are dressed appropriately.  My daughter won't transition from the wrap yet, but when my son was about the age of yours I could come back indoors and gently take him off onto the bed so he'd keep sleeping.  Go ahead and try other more convenient options if they work for you, but I always find getting out for a walk way less stressful than struggling with getting a kid to sleep.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
<p>It's looking like nap is a no go today...and running on 4 hours of sleep for me because he was up for 5 hours in the middle of the night means that I have nothing left to give.  I don't want to nurse him, I don't want to carry him on my back for hours...I am just done and very, very, very tired.  And, now I'm freaking out because if he's up for hours again tonight I don't even know how we'll get through...</p>
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<p>So, today...he ASKED to go to sleep at 9:30am (an hour after he woke up).   So, I nursed him and put him in his crib...where he talked for about 45 minutes.  Then I went in and asked him if he wanted me to sit in the room with him (saying I would stay as long as he lay down).  He lay down for 10 minutes but kept peeking at me...then stood up and it was clear he was done with this attempt.  So, lunch and played a bit.  Then, popped him in the car and drove for an hour at noon....lots of yawning and eye rubbing, but nothing.</p>
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<p>Came home, nursed him, popped him back in the crib.  An hour later (during which he talked to himself) I changed his poopy diaper.  Put him back in the crib.  It's now 2:30pm...I have spent ALL day trying to get this kid to sleep.  </p>
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<p>I just had to vent...sorry.  I am just SO tired, and there is no nap option for <strong>me</strong> if he doesn't sleep and a no sleep for me if he doesn't sleep tonight...</p>
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<p>I am so, so, SO sympathetic.  Seriously.  I know exactly what you're going through, and sometimes I really, truly want to throw my daughter out the window.  I get really angry at her and act really mean and say nasty things that I feel awful about...ugh.  You are totally not alone.  Could you maybe try letting him lie down on you and rubbing/patting his back?  That sometimes works for my daughter.  What also sometimes works (I know this sounds awful) is making her mad.  Like, if she's all distracted playing with Goodnight Baby instead of sleeping, I snatch it away, she has a big crying fit, and ends up asleep at the end.  I discovered this accidentally, but I have to admit I sometimes do it on purpose.  The last thing I might suggest is just accepting the problem, keeping up a consistent wake-up time, nap routine/nap time (ideally earlier than usual), keeping him in the room for a consistent amount of quiet time, and putting him to bed a LOT earlier than usual, like, enough time that he could get his full day's sleep needs overnight.  DON'T keep trying to get him to nap all day.  You will drive yourself absolutely bonkers.  Good luck, and keep up the venting!!! You need SOME outlet. </p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
<p>Thanks so much for the sympathy and understanding...I did make myself bonkers today.  So, tomorrow we accept and move on...and tonight, he's already asleep.  Thank goodness I had a babysitter for a couple of hours (I had a wake to go to) tonight...I REALLY needed the break.  </p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
<p>Newmamalizzy, THANKS so much for the advice to put him down early enough so that he gets "enough" sleep overnight!  He went to bed at 6pm and woke up at 7pm (the longest he's ever slept) and then after a VERY full morning at the zoo he fell asleep in the car on the way home--and then transferred to the crib where he is still sleeping (it's been almost 2 hours!)  I think we'll go on a mama/toddler date for dinner tonight to celebrate (and to get me out of cooking ;)  I hope he's "reset" now!</p>
 

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<p>My son is a horrible napper so I'm a crappy resource.  But could he be teething?  My son is getting 4 molars at once (15 months) and his sleep pattern has SUCKED this week.  Just a thought.  Or really any major milestone will screw with sleep. </p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
<p>I have my fingers crossed that he's "reset" to his normal sleep pattern!  SuperMillerMom, he is working on his 2 year molars AND he's working very hard on trying to talk (we have MORE words!!!  woo-hoo!)  AND Mommy is away for work this week--so big week for him in many ways.  But today he went down fairly easily for his nap, and I think I'm going to wake him up after 2 hours because anything longer than that seems to be causing problems with bedtime.  This seems like a major shift for us, mostly because he's had the same sleep schedule for about 6 months.  </p>
 

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<p>So glad things are getting back to normal for you guys.  Hope it keeps up!  We're still having a rocky time with the nap here - DD keeps pooping during her naptime!  What's your LO's sleep schedule now, BTW?  I'd like to change ours up a little bit and see if we can push bedtime back a bit, so I'm curious what works for others.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
<p>Well, it's still a bit wonky...the three days he's napped he's gone to bed WAY later than usual (like 9pm).  So, I'm going to start limiting his naps to see if that helps (as in, not letting him sleep past 3:30 or 2 hours, whichever comes first).  Soooo, prior to last week</p>
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<p>awake around 6am</p>
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<p>nap around 1pm (usually three hours)</p>
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<p>asleep at 7:15pm</p>
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<p>Yesterday, </p>
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<p>awake around 6:30am</p>
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<p>nap around 1:30pm, woke him up at 4:15pm</p>
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<p>asleep at 9:30pm (I put him down at 7:45 and had to go resettle him twice)</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
<p>Well, spoke a bit too soon...we've only had 4 or 5 actual, good naps in a couple of weeks!  Anyone else dealing with this with their almost 2s?  A friend of mine told me that it sounds like he's giving up his nap--which seems inconceivable to me!  So tell me about your reclaimed nap time if you've had this happen and lived to tell the tale!</p>
 

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<p>We're still dealing with it, too, but if you don't get any more enlightening here, I did see a bunch of encouraging posts on this topic on the Berkeley Parenting Network forum. </p>
<p><a href="http://parents.berkeley.edu/advice/sleep/toddlernaps.html" target="_blank">http://parents.berkeley.edu/advice/sleep/toddlernaps.html</a></p>
 
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